Applications open for 2024 BIM Innovation Studio

Ambitious aquatech businesses are invited to apply for the groundbreaking BIM Innovation Studio which is helping grow Ireland’s €200 million aquatech business. 


This free, intensive two-week programme supports young aquatech companies in all aspects of development including technology and investment. It is delivered in partnership with Hatch Blue and supported by the European Maritime Fisheries and Aquaculture Fund. 


Now in its seventh year, some 50 projects and companies have completed the Innovation Studio, and have attracted a total investment of around €15 million, creating more than 200 hi-tech jobs. 


Eight to ten successful applicants will be matched with experienced mentors to further develop their business strategy, product or service. They will also have access to a global network of aquaculture technical experts. 


Applications are open until 19th July 2024 with the BIM Innovation Studio taking place from 30th September to 10th October at the River Lee Hotel, Cork City. Several companies will be selected to pitch at the BIM Aquatech Conference on 11 October where the winner of the BIM Aquatech Business of the Year 2024 will also be announced. 


Aquatech is any technology or innovation driving sustainable seafood farming, and it can be applied progressively to the breeding, raising, and harvesting of fish, shellfish, and aquatic plants. The BIM Innovation Studio offers opportunities for companies in areas such as pharmaceuticals, marine engineering, genetics, feed additives and artificial intelligence.


The Innovation Studio supports the ambitious goals set out in the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine’s Food Vision 2030 Strategy, including to promote Ireland as a knowledge base for aquaculture technology and research and attract external investment into the sector. 


Significant growth occurred in the seafood-tech sector over the last five years with the number of active companies growing from 42 in 2016 to 62 in 2021, according to BIM’s Business of Seafood 2022 report. Over this period employment in these companies increased from 517 in 2016 to 892 in 2021 while turnover increased from €86m in 2016 to €217m in 2021. 

How to Apply

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